Book where a mysterious force transports most of the humans from Earth to various other planets and times

I forget the title and author, but he described the opening as such: a mysterious force, likely aliens, removes a large proportion of humans from Earth, and transports them to different planets, while also going back in time by the same distance. I believe the main action of the book begins with communications arriving at earth simultaneously from each of these unwitting colonies at the same time, shortly after the abduction. Thank you.

• This reminds me a little of the backstory from Charles Stross' Singularity Sky: nesfa.org/reviews/Olson/SingularitySky.html – andrewsi Jul 20 '15 at 2:50
• @andrewsi Make it an answer, man. It's perfect. The setting is sometimes referred to as "the Eschaton universe" after the superhuman entity at play. Alas, Stross has said he won't be playing in that realm any more, so there is just Singularity Sky and Iron Sunrise. – dmckee Jul 20 '15 at 3:30
• I guess that was it. Didn't seem the same when I looked at the precis, but the backstory does fit. Thank you. – brad Johnson Jul 24 '15 at 9:50
• This has too few deatils, so I'm not sure, but can it be Philip José Farmer's Riverworld, or some book by A & B Strugatsky? – b_jonas Jan 3 '17 at 21:36